I looked at the Samsungs, Kindles, Google Nexus 10, and the TF701. After a week of looking at all these I decided that
- Samsung was too expensive. Nice machines, but I was just not willing to pay the difference
- Kindles are also nice but a little small for me and I felt like I would always be fighting the Amazon controls they put on the device. HW wise it was the lightest machine with the best screen.
- Google Nexus 10 seemed a little too similar to the 701 and it had a little lesser specs (CPU and no MicroSD). Maybe I would wait for the NEW version, but it did not look like it is coming anytime soon (hopefully summer) and my guess is that it will be in the $500+ range
- So since the 701 has a better screen, better CPU, and very attractive price ($359 at amazon), I decided to go with it
Got the tablet and really did not wait: Upgraded to 4.3, Unlocked the bootloader, and installed CROMiX 6.0.1a on it. 20 minutes and I was good to go. I was really surprised how much faster than my 700 it is. I knew that the 1.9MHZ is better than the 700's 1.6 but I had the 700 overclocked and with the increased resolution, I expected they would be close. But the performance difference is really noticeable. I cannot comment on CROMiX vs the Stock in terms of how much the performance improvement is the optimized ROM because I did not really run the stock long enough. But this thing just flies. Boat browser with flash works great. My 16GB MicroSD worked great, the restore from Titanium worked great. My Nova settings were there and worked without trouble. Netflix does not stutter at all or Google movies or Mx Player. The battery was horrible after my first charge (lasted less than 8 hours) but also I was messing with it the whole time. After that, it looks like it goes about 2.5-3 hours per 1% in sleep and I would say it is a bit better than my 700 while on. The ROM has a "reading mode" that seems to slow down battery consumption while reading my Kindle app, but I am not sure how much better it is.
Just wanted to share my experiences with the TF701. Not saying it is the best machine out there, but for the price, I am very happy and cannot imagine the added cost for the other models would buy me that much. All the features of the 700 with the added performance and better screen. Very happy.